Grad Students

Luis Manuel Olguin

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I study the organization of face-to-face encounters from an interdisciplinary and multimodal perspective.  My (yet being nurtured) scholarship focuses on the microdynamics of social influence and the morality proper to and enacted through social interaction.  At this moment, I am particularly interested in the management of interactional disruptions, both in terms of how people respond to problems of understanding and conversational progressivity to the ways people actively use such disruptions to influence others' behavior. 

I am currently working on my master's project on the normalization of corruption in the Montesinos video collection, popularly known as vladivideos in Peru.  In late 2000, the discovery of a set of audio and video recordings portraying Peruvian networks of political corruption led to president Alberto Fujimori's impeachment, escape to Japan, and subsequent imprisonment.  I use this historically unique dataset to analyze how intersubjective understandings of making and receiving bribes were accomplished through everyday verbal and embodied practices, which, in tandem, served as on-the-fly mechanisms for rationalizing and justifying crime.  By using recorded materials of political corruption and providing an interactional account of 'moral disengagement' (Bandura, 1999), my research contributes to previous scholarship on the normalization of deviance and corruption, which has primarily relied on indirect methods, such as interviews, ethnography, and regression analysis, to delineate why and how people act unethically.

Through my studies on semiotic and linguistic anthropology, I have also become interested in everyday cultural technologies for representing human interaction as social phenomena in and of themselves.  From quoting someone verbatim in the midst of a juicy gossip to highly detailed techniques for transcribing and coding human conduct, we use representations of talk and social interaction as semiotic artifacts on a daily basis.  Either as tools for making someone keep their promises or as evidence in court or scientific research, past interactions are brought to new encounters in varied ways and for multiple purposes.  In my research, I take a look not only at the sociopolitical determinants of isolating and entextualizing strips of verbal and embodied conduct, but I am particularly concerned with their differential status and affordances as material signs under new interactional conditions.

I have a website in Spanish (above), which I try to keep updated with relevant information about conversation analysis in an attempt to bring the field closer to the Spanish-speaking academia.

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Fields of Study

Conversation Analysis, Linguistic Anthropology. 


Influence and social control in human interaction. Spanish conversation. Multimodal approaches to meaning making and pragmatic action. Food and money.

Grants and Awards

  • Graduate Summer Research Mentorship (UCLA, 2017)
  • 2016/17 Graduate Division Academic Year Fellowship (UCLA, 2016)
  • PAIP Programa de Apoyo a la Investigación en Posgrado - Grant (PUCP, 2012)
  • BEA Beca a la Excelencia Académica - Scholarship (PUCP, 2010)


  • M.A. in Linguistics, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú (2013)
  • B.A. in Humanities - Linguistics Major, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú (2011)